March 22, 2010
A lot has been said and written about the expectations of the Met starting staff in 2010. It is apparent that opinions very greatly in this subject, and can get a bit testy from time to time. In order to gain some quantifiable perspective on the matter, I thought it would be fun to gauge just how much confidence Met fans have by doing over/under polls for each projected starter. Each poll will be broken down by wins and ERA. Perhaps most importantly, I leave my own opinions in the stable here.
So here is the breakdown for each projected starter:
Santana- 3.20 ERA/15 wins
Pelfrey – 4.00 ERA/12 wins
Perez – 4.20 ERA/12 wins
Maine – 3.80 ERA/11 wins
Niese – 4.00 ERA/10 wins
For the purposes of these polls, I use Niese as the 5th starter, even though he is the only competitor for the spot with options and the fact that he has not done anything to prove he is the front-runner at this stage. Just roll with me here.
Please vote for each starter’s associated poll on the right margin of this site.
March 21, 2010
The rumors have begun, and like most rumors, they can spread like wildfire. I try to absorb this data as best as I can without treating it as the gospel. It is sort of like dipping your foot in the water instead of jumping in head first.
Even with the foot dip, you still get a feel for the water temperature. This ultimately determines whether or not you like what you feel, or in this case, what you can see. What do I see? I see the possiblity of trading for someone who at one time would have been a tremendous upgrade over what we realistically have as our opening day first baseman. I purposely exclude the best choice for the job. That being Ike Davis, whose potential far exceeds anything Daniel Murphy has to offer. Unfortunately, Davis will be spending the majority of this season in Buffalo. It is the Met mantra, “Ike in 2011, Ike in 2011, Ike in 2011.” If you say it enough times, you start to actually believe that this is the only sensible answer. That, for lack of a better word, is just crappy.
The question, therefore, is whether or not Mike Lowell is a better fit for the 2010 Mets than Daniel Murphy is. If this were 2007, there would be no debate. Unfotunately, this is 2010, and the reality is Mike Lowell is a different player until proven otherwise. If he weren’t, then the Boston Red Sox would not have brought Adrian Beltre on board, and would not be rumored as “shopping” Mike Lowell to the highest bidder. They are even rumored to be offering him along with the provision of eating the majority of his contract. Does this sound like someone who is anything close to the 2007 version of Mike Lowell? Common sense would dictate that he is not.
Let us not forget that this man underwent hip surgery in 2008. Degenerative hips are not exactly something that befalls someone in the prime of their career, and it is not something that one bounces back from after surgery.
All I am saying is, do we really need to trade a minor league player for a guy whose best days are realistically behind him? I know, I know. Even if I am right, he would still be an upgrade over the pitiful Fernando Tatis, who would at best be one week away from his release if he were a member of any other major league team right now. Lowell would then fill the role Tatis is ticketed to hold, which is backup first and third baseman, as well as a righty bat off the bench. The financial cost is nothing as well. I see the argument here.
I am just not fond of the idea of another guy on the wrong side of the hill as a member of this team. The distinct possiblity of him spending time on the all too popular disabled list just makes me nauseus. Besides, as much as I and everyone else is down on Daniel Murphy, he does hold one characteristic that Lowell does not. Youth.
March 18, 2010
This video seriously made me smile today. Thanks to Matt Pignataro for this one.
I could almost see this happening. Enjoy!
March 18, 2010
I suppose that I need to look at the bright side here. Now I can go grab a brew from the fridge whenever Cora steps to the plate. We can all use a timeout, can’t we?
March 12, 2010
Now that Jose Reyes is out of the picture for the time being, we can now focus on who will likely be playing shortstop for the Mets on a regular basis to start the season.
I am hoping that the Mets actually surprise me here, but I do not have such lofty expectations. I want to see Ruben Tejada out there on opening day, but I am quite sure that Alex Cora (yawn) will be there instead.
Alex Cora will not kill your team in any way. He makes decent contact and fields adequately. That sounds alright doesn’t it? The problem is this…been there, done that. Cora is what he is, and that is a utility player. He is not going to excel at any one area that warrants every day play.
As I previously mentioned, Ruben Tejada has that X-Factor called the unknown. He is a young player on the rise through the Met farm system. He is someone that you could hitch that enthusiastic star to this
April. Sure, we have no idea how this will translate against major league pitching. This is especially true once teams get video on his swing and begin to make adjustments on how to pitch him. Yes, he is also just twenty years of age. However, he is currently enjoying his second spring invite with the big club this March. He is at that stage of development where everyday at bats are needed. He is also needed on the opening day roster to serve as Cora’s backup. Why not give those important at bats to him here? If he struggles initially, you can spell him with Cora here and there. If he continues to struggle, you can send him down and play Cora everyday from that point forward until Reyes returns (whenever that is). I am not sure what the Mets have to lose with this type of plan.
Ultimately aside from a token start here and there, I am quite sure that we will be watching Alex Cora get his four at bats per game while Tejada wastes away on the bench. Then again, I may be shocked instead.
March 11, 2010
This is before he can resume “baseball activities”, mind you. Do I need to say anything more than I have already said?
March 10, 2010
Finding a reliable eighth inning guy can be a tenuous process for any ball club. However, in today’s baseball, it is essential that you have someone reliable in this spot. The eighth inning involves extreme mental conditions that only some can handle. It does not produce the same pressure that a closer endures on a game to game basis because there is still that safety net warming up behind you. This point aside, the bridge to the closer does have its inherent pressures just the same.
The top teams usually have someone who is not only talented in this spot, but that same pitcher will also have some major league experience nine times out of ten.
This brings us to the list of candidates that the Mets have fighting for this spot. Of all of these players, none have more than what amounts to one full season of major league experience amongst them. It appears that the Mets have thrown their chips onto the table and are going for broke here.
Of all of the candidates, only Bobby Parnell and Fernando Nieve have any major league experience. Ryota Igarashi has never pitched against major league hitters. Jenrry Mejia, although currently looking extremely dominant, is still just twenty years of age. It is as if the Mets just threw some guys into a basket and decided to see what happens.
There is, however, one guy who I believe could handle this spot at least adequately. That guy is Pedro Feliciano. The Mets believe him to be their seventh inning guy as always, but beggars can not be choosers. Feliciano is the only pitcher on the roster who has actually pitched in the eighth inning, albeit on a fairly limited and intermittent basis. Most importantly, he has experienced prolonged success at the major league level, and he has shown that appearances certainly are not a factor for him thus far.
Unfortunately, I believe that the Mets will keep him in the seventh inning and in only certain situations (against the elite lefty hitters) in the eighth inning. This leaves the bridge to Francisco Rodriguez a shaky one at best.
Hey, you never know. One of the other inexperienced candidates could emerge and do well here. However, I like to play the odds as a gambling man, and these are odds that I would have to walk away from.